Postmortem Planning Is Part of the Equation

November 13, 2012

Part of the estate planning process involves the execution of documents that direct the transfer of assets to your heirs after you pass away. Most people will use either a will or a trust to accomplish this.
Making sure that you have legally binding documents in place is absolutely essential. However, when you are working with an estate planning lawyer to draw up these documents you should consider the matter of postmortem planning as well.
A document can't get up off the desk and take action. The will or the trust is going to provide instructions, but you must also arrange for human beings to make your wishes become a reality after you pass away.
Individuals who express their wishes through the execution of a will must understand the fact that the estate will be passing through the probate process. Your family may not have any any idea how probate works.  At least the executor that you chose should have some understanding of the probate process.
A wise course of action may be to make arrangements for the attorney who assists you as you are drawing up your will to act as the probate attorney after your death.
The same thing is true of trust administration. You should instruct your trustee to speak with your attorney about administering the trust upon your incapcity or death.  This will help ensure that your fiduciaries will have the legal support that they need to carry out your estate plans for the benefit of your loved ones.

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